My journey as a story teller started several years ago when I became a mother. I too had oodles of fantasy and mythical stories in my kitty. But, eventually I realised that today’s children find it difficult to connect themselves to the queens, the kings, and the talking animals. Hence it was necessary that stories were to be told in a certain way so that kids can associate with the virtues and not the allegory. Below are a few lines from Plato’s Republic, where Socrates says,
“If we want the guardians of our city to think that it’s ashamed to be easily provoked into hating one another, we mustn’t allow any stories about gods warring, fighting, or plotting against one another. The battles of gods and giants, and all the various stories of gods hating their family and friends should be neither told nor even woven in embroideries.
The young people can’t distinguish between what is allegorical and what is not, and the opinions they absorb at that age are hard to erase and apt to become unalterable.
For these reasons, we should take the utmost care to insure that the first stories they hear are about virtue.”
A vivid reader in me was always in scout for some means to instil the virtues in the children in a unique way, apart from the fantasy and the drama. I always wondered about,
- How would our children be able to absorb the wisdom and the way of life from Indian mythological stories, The Vedas, Upanishads and the Bhagavad-Gita? How can these pearls of wisdom be made joyous? Rather than being monologues and doctrines.
- How to instigate the sense of belonging children in our children? That they are able to appreciate rich culture and diversity of our nation.
- How would our children learn the values and ethics in life? in a more pragmatic and fun filled way, rather than being didactic
This pursuit increased to multifold when I went to the U.K with a scholarship from J.N TATA endowment and University of Brighton international student scholarship, for my masters in Engineering.
During my stay in London, I was a parent representative at my daughter’s school. I had chance to interact with various parents, it was quite an insight to see that there was consensus in parents (irrespective of their cultural background and nationality) that the story books are one of the best ways to boost kids morale.
This experience encouraged me to write for my daughter’s school, short story competition and the story was picked and was published in London’s authors book.
The published book was a kind of assurance for my ideas that they can communicate with eloquence. Thus a re-discovered passion for reading and writing is being presented as a unique Value Based Educational story book series for children with fun filled activities in them.
The Saanu and Banu book series and Sunidista are the hope for a better society and a sound and healthy mind for harmonious children of tomorrow.